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On 9 August every year, the world celebrates the International Day of Indigenous Peoples. There are over 370 million indigenous people in some 90 countries across the globe. 20,000 of them – the Sami – live in Sweden. While the Sami are the only recognised indigenous people of Europe, they rarely make media headlines. Meanwhile, Sweden is accused of not taking its responsibility towards the indigenous people seriously. Against the backdrop of the Sami people lobbying the Swedish government for a truth- and reconciliation process to address human rights violations against them, the first part of this article looks at the history of the Sami people and its stance in Swedish society today. In the second part of the article, we take a closer look at the use of resources in Sápmi.
Date of publication: August 2016
Length: 7 pages